Southgate Faces: Faces and Voices from an American Shipyard

Aug. 4, 2017 — Sept. 22, 2017

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On view at the Lewis Gallery, Portland Public Library

Join us for a reception celebrating the exhibit Wednesday, September 6, from 5 to 7 pm, at Portland Public Library.

Portland Public Library hosts an exciting new exhibit in conjunction with the Maine Maritime Museum in the Lewis Gallery, August 4 through 22, 2017.  Curious about the gritty, hardhat-wearing workers at a shipyard in their own backyard, Heather Perry and Hopper McDonough from Bath, Maine set out to document the faces and voices of a blue-collar culture existing in their blind spot. Bath Iron Works is one of the nation’s oldest shipyards, and is currently Maine’s 3rd largest employer, where 6000 workers build some of the US Navy’s most technologically advanced warships.

The Yard has a signature of massive buildings and towering cranes on a mile of Kennebec River waterfront. The Southgate, one of three entrances to the highly secure facility, is where many of the welders, pipe fitters, painters, marine electricians, ship fitters, and insulators congregate between shifts and during breaks. It’s a place where these union workers refer to themselves as brothers and sisters, and the Southgate is their turf. Just beyond the gate, photographer Heather Perry and audiographer Hopper McDonough set up a portable photo studio to catch the workers on their 30 minute break and convinced them to step inside to be photographed and interviewed.

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Maine Maritime Museum

243 Washington Street
Bath, Maine 04530